As a clear sign of its interest in hydrogen, the Brussels Commission has announced a new IPCEI worth more than €5 billion (about $5 billion). This new project is called Hy2Use and concerns 13 countries, including France, for a total of 35 projects involving 29 companies.
And that’s two! After Hy2Tech this summer, which focused more on mobility, here is Hy2use. This IPCEI covers other fields of application, including hydrogen infrastructures and applications in the industrial sector. The 13 participating countries are Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Greece, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Spain and Sweden.
On the French side, the winners are Air Liquide (which also has projects in the Netherlands), Total and Engie. The latter two are partners in the Masshylia project, which concerns the La Mède refinery.
The €5.2 billion that Member States are allowed to provide should help raise an additional €7 billion in private investment, according to the Commission. The package should support the construction of large-scale electrolysers and transport infrastructure for the production, storage and transport of renewable and low-carbon hydrogen.
“The hydrogen value chain in Europe is in its infancy,” said the EC’s competition commissioner Margrethe Vestager. “This makes it risky for companies and member states to invest alone in such an innovative market. That is where state aid has a role to play to unlock, crowd-in and leverage substantial private investments that would otherwise not materialise.”
Naturally, the aim is also to reduce dependence on natural gas in the context of the war in Ukraine.
Article written by Laurent Meillaud, translated by Logan King and reviewed by Marina Leite.